Bodley’s traditional end of season bash, the Whippersnappers, took place this Friday just gone. Once more the team decamped to what is fast becoming our home ground, Cumnor, to play out what proved to be one of the more enjoyable, as well as close, games for a while. As per usual as many people as possible were invited/asked/press ganged/or just plain related to someone who plays cricket for the team, and initially sides were going to be determined by whoever got there first, such was the concern about getting a game in before it got too dark. Luckily by 5.30 the clouds rolled away and a gorgeous warm evening ensued and enough players had turned up to enable us to split the teams up on a customarily oddball way, this year a team made up of Fathers and Sons (including Fathers whose sons weren't there) plus Gareth (who was feeling fatherly having recently seen his niece) against those without offspring, or, the fertile against the infertile. So, James and his son Daniel, Chris Marsh and his son Thomas, Mike Webb and his two boys Robbie and Malcolm were joined by Messer’s Ackland, Mckiernan, Abbassi (welcome back Sadiq) and Uncle Jones to take on the rest, a team which included Andrew Colquhoun, who hadn’t played since the Whippersnappers of two years ago and was welcomed back.
The Fathers bat first and start well, with Leigh, Gareth and Chris finding the boundary on regular occasions and retiring, whilst extras, including a number of wides, helped out the total, which finished on 137 after 20 overs. Comedy highlights were provided by the large amount of sledging, ribaldry and good(ish) natured piss-taking and attempts at off-putting. Ackland had a brief 2-ball flurry at the end, managing to be dropped and nearly run-out of the same ball. A good total, but the opposition have a number of good batsmen ...three of whom start well, with David Shackleton, Tim and Matthew (after dropping anchor on 19) all retiring on 20. Tim’s innings was a thing of befuddled beauty. I'm sure he won’t mind me saying that he has one main shot, a golf club swing to cow, which managed to beat despairing fielders on a number of occasions. A combination of a middle order collapse and the Fathers more controlled bowling (and more targeted sledging) meant that the run-rate dropped after the opening onslaught, and even with all three openers coming back on in the last couple of overs the fathers managed to sneak home, victors by two runs. Special mention here to two marvellous catches, one from James and another from Sadiq, who after a long break from the side caught Tim out on the boundary, and some explosive batting from David S with a number of sixes that rattled into the roof of the nearby nets. Hands and heads were shaken by both sides, and we all left wondering how this kind of boundary destroying form has eluded us all season. We always seem to peak just in time for Autumn's early nights and complete absence of cricket!
Another season (forgetting the Authors game for a moment) comes to an end. Drinks were had and then a curry to finish off, roll on 2016. SA, GJ